Pinal County Sheriff’s deputies on Monday, Feb. 7, arrested Lewis Paul Larkin, better known as the Pinal County assessor, on charges of driving under the influence.
Deputies stopped Larkin’s 2008 Dodge Dakota at 5:26 p.m. as he drove away from the Kokopelli Moon Saloon in Florence and went westbound on Highway 287.
The vehicle was stopped after deputies saw it swerve, according to a news release from the Pinal County Sheriff’s Department.
Larkin, 67, smelled of alcohol and had watery bloodshot eyes, the release said.
Field sobriety tests and numerous clues of impairment confirmed Larkin was impaired by alcohol. He also tested at .099 blood alcohol content on a preliminary breath-testing device, the release said.
The legal limit in Arizona is .08 blood alcohol content.
Following arrest, Larkin submitted to a blood test. The Arizona Department of Public Safety Crime Laboratory will test to sample determine alcohol concentration.
The sheriff’s department plans to submit charges to the Pinal County Attorney’s Office pending the results of the blood test.
The sheriff’s department released the following anonymous tip that was submitted to its website Monday:
“The Pinal County Assessor frequents the Kokopelli Moon Saloon everyday (Monday-Fri) around 3 p.m. until around 5 p.m. then, inebriated, he gets into his late model silver Dodge Dakota and drives home. Why does the Pinal County Sheriff turn a blind (eye) on this?”
In a written statement, Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu said the department takes a zero-tolerance stance on drunk driving.
“Many innocent motorists are killed each year in Arizona as a result of impaired drivers. If you are driving impaired by alcohol and or drugs in Pinal County you will be arrested no matter who you are,” Babeu said.